Tale ved åpningen av USAs nye kanselli

Utenriksminister Børge Brendes tale i forbindelse med at USAs ambassade ble flyttet fra Oslo sentrum og åpnet på Huseby.

Dear friends,

It isn't often that our close friend and ally opens a new chancery here in Oslo, so it's a great honour to share this day with you.

One hundred and twelve years ago, the United States was one of the first countries to recognise Norway's independence.

But the bond between us is older than that.

It stretches back to your founding fathers.

Their ideas heavily inspired our constitution, which was signed on 17 May 1814.

These ideas of freedom, democracy, human rights and checks and balances were the bricks with which Norway, as we know it today, was built.

Today, we exchange thousands of students every year, and we have strong business ties.

The activities of Norwegian companies in the US range from the maritime, oil, energy and defense sectors to design and new, creative technology-based industries.

***

When I cast a glance at these new premises, I am really impressed.

This elegant piece of architecture is in perfect harmony with its natural surroundings.

It is modern – and yet inspired by the traditional Norwegian longhouse.

I am told that the green copper roof is to remind us of the grass roof of an old farm house, but it also reminds us of the green patina of the Statue of Liberty, the copper for which was delivered from a Norwegian mine in the 1880s.

But, first and foremost, it is a building of the future:

Not only does it meet the strictest energy and environmental requirements in the world – it far exceeds them.

This building has so much more than a green roof.

Some people have wondered how a worthy successor could be found for Eero Saarinen's iconic design in Henrik Ibsen's gate.

Today, we know the answer.

I congratulate you and wish you every success in your new home!